Our vet got certified in chiropractic care and switched clinics to practice all Eastern Medicine. I've never seen anyone so happy from making a career shift. Altho we miss her during routine care, our horses will still benefit from her wonderful caring ability to explain conditions and options to us. We have a similar mindset, in that there is a place for both types of care. Nobody was happier to see her again then Gumby, 'er Koda.
Brad was having some concerns with Cierra's back, and wanted to get it checked out further. She was indeed sore, and will need some additional care. After being off for so long, we thought it would be a good idea to have Koda looked at as well. His adjustments were more standard. The vet watched him move and saw no signs of lameness. Some slight hock soreness was visible, but nothing bad.
We talked about where we are at with his recovery, and our typical routine. It was nice to hear the time spent wrapping Koda's hocks was/is worthwhile. She wants me to continue using the hock wraps pre-ride (20+ minutes) and suggested also putting them on briefly afterwards while I untack. We are officially cleared to start loping again, but with straighter lines (vs smaller circles).
Originally I had planned to start with lunging Koda at the lope, and work my way up. The vet preferred Koda be ridden, as long as I was comfortable doing it. I had thoughts about asking our trainer to lope him for the first time. However, I really wanted to continue this stage of Koda's rehab myself. I know enough, to know when to ask for help. I am a lifelong learner, and that time will come again. There is only one way to find out where you are at, and that is to try.
It's hard to put into words how it felt to lope Koda again. The first time I asked, he woke up. His response was a bit like "wait, what - you want me to lope" and he did, but we were doing a diagonal across the indoor arena and had run out of space in no time. It didn't surprise me since I had been saying "no, we are just trotting" for so long. The next time he was ready for my lope cue, and we crossed the arena again.
We did some other things, so as not to anticipate my asking. He is notorious for predicting practice sequence. I tried loping again, this time at the rail. I forgot how incredibly smooth he is at this gait...it's like floating on a cloud! Koda responded so softly when I asked him to lope...I am still in awe. He held his frame and gave me both leads, altho I had to restart one side. He didn't rush, and seemed to be content loping again. It was brief, but it was. I am sooo happy to be another step closer towards where we were, together.